Should it be a handshake or a handclasp? What about germs?
I feel the handshake is powerful beyond measure - ESPECIALLY for young children.
Why? I thought you would never ask. To me, the handshake shows an inner confidence. It can show how you feel about your counterpart. When we think about shaking hands with someone, what are the things that we think about ... eye contact, firmness, the second hand on the top? In my opinion, a handshake can show how genuine someone is. My father will shake with his first hand and almost always bring the second hand over the top to show people he cares.
You may ask yourself why a soccer club would require it's players to shake hands with all of its coaches. At Sporting CT, we feel it is a sign of respect. A mutual respect that we have for our players and we hope our players have with us. We can show them that we care. We can get to know them from that handshake and help it become easier to talk to us. There is a ton that you can learn from the handshake. I would love to see the players in the club begin to shake each other's hands more often. I feel this level of respect should work its way across the club on all levels.
Respect is a huge character trait we think we can do more to foster. As a club, we are working to build positive character traits in our players. Helping them to become better individuals in everyday life will translate to everything that they do. You guys do a great job of this but we can help. Moving into the next part of the season, we are looking to partner with the local community to do outreach events. Our 2004 and 2005 boys teams are collecting canned goods and are going to stock the food pantry. Our 2007 & 2008 boys and girls are making Valentines for Vet's that will be handed out at the Newington Vet's Hospital. We feel these small acts will become a monthly activity for all of our teams that will hopefully help build a stronger foundation of character!
If you think about the learning lessons we can take away from the combination of these small acts they are numerous. 1 - We can help our local community. 2 - We can educate the children on what these people have done for our country or how we have a blessed life compared to others and what they deal with on a daily basis. We can show these children/young adults how good it feels to help someone. I could go on and on about what I feel this can do for our players.
Now for the translation to soccer. Our players need to learn that you have to work hard for what you want, it is not given to you. The harder you are going to work the more you will get out of it. They need to learn to respect the game, respect their teammates, respect their coaches, and respect their parents. Soccer is a privilege that they are getting and it can be taken away from them at any time. We should not take it for granted. When I look at the teams that I coach the players that have the most success in the later years are the ones that have the strong character traits instilled in them at a young age. They put others first because they understand that is how the team can have success. They do not question the coach and what he/she is asking them to do on the playing field. They appreciate that their parents drive them to the practices, games, ID camps, Tournaments, wash their clothes, buy them new uniforms and cleats. They get it and do not take it for granted. This is what we want to see from all of our players.
Sporting CT is looking to reshape the game of soccer. We are looking at the entire player and how we can help them to be a better person which will translate to the soccer field, the classroom, the home and, ultimately, the future.